Safed Musli herb (Chlorophytum borivilianum), research studies, benefit, by Ray Sahelian, M.D.
February 16 2014

Safed musli is being promoted as a sexual enhancement herb and has historically been used as an aphrodisiac herb. I could not find any published research in humans in the Western medical literature regarding the aphrodisiac effects of safed musli. Rodent studies indicate this herb to have sexual enhancing benefits.

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Aphrodisiac herbs available over the counter
These include catuaba, herba cistanches, tongkat ali, butea superba, maca extract, cnidium monnieris, tribulus terrestris extract, mucuna pruriens, horny goat weed, avena sativa, muira puama, and yohimbe bark extract.

Aphrodisiac properties of safed musli
Effects of Chlorophytum borivilianum Safed Musli on sexual behavior and sperm count in male rats.
Phytother Res. 2008; Kenjale R, Shah R, Sathaye S. Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Mumbai University Institute of Chemical Technology, Matunga, Mumbai 400019, India.
This study was designed to evaluate the aphrodisiac and spermatogenic potential of the aqueous extract of dried roots of Safed Mulsi in rats. Male Wistar albino rats were divided into four groups. Rats were orally treated with (1) Control group: distilled water; (2) CB 125 mg/kg/day; (3) CB 250 mg/kg/day; and (4) Viagra group: 4 mg/kg/day sildenafil citrate and their sexual behavior was monitored 3 h later using a receptive female. Their sexual behavior was evaluated on days 1, 7, 14, 21 and 28 of treatment. Safed Musli had a marked aphrodisiac action, increased libido, sexual vigor and sexual arousal. Similarly, at the higher dose (250 mg/kg) all the parameters of sexual behavior were enhanced, but showed a saturation effect after day 14. On day 60 the sperm count increased significantly in both the Safed Musli groups, 125 mg/kg and 250 mg/kg, in a dose dependent manner. Thus, roots of Safed Musli Chlorophytum borivilianum can be useful in the treatment of certain forms of sexual inadequacies.

A Comparative Study on Aphrodisiac Activity of Some Ayurvedic Herbs in Male Albino Rats.
Arch Sex Behav. 2009. Thakur M, Chauhan NS, Bhargava S, Dixit VK. Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Dr. H. S. Gour University, Sagar, MP, India.
The roots of Asparagus racemosus, Chlorophytum borivilianum safed musli, and rhizomes of Curculigo orchioides are popular for their aphrodisiac properties. The herbs have been traditionally used as Vajikaran Rasayana herbs because of their putative positive influence on sexual performance in humans. Lyophilized aqueous extracts obtained from the roots of A. racemosus, safed musli, and rhizomes of Curculigo orchioides were studied for sexual behavior effects in male albino rats and compared with untreated control group animals. Administration of 200 mg/kg body weight of the aqueous extracts had pronounced anabolic effect in treated animals as evidenced by weight gains in the body and reproductive organs. There was a significant variation in the sexual behavior of animals as reflected by reduction of mount latency, ejaculation latency, post ejaculatory latency, intromission latency, and an increase of mount frequency. Penile erection (indicated by Penile Erection Index) was also considerably enhanced. The present results support the folklore claim for the usefulness of safed musli and these herbs as natural aphrodisiacs and provide a scientific basis for their traditional usage.

Animal studies, antioxidant and anti-stress effects
Anti-stress and anti-oxidant effects of roots of Chlorophytum borivilianum (Santa Pau & Fernandes).
Indian J Exp Biol. 2007 . Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Mumbai University Institute of Chemical Technology, Matunga, Mumbai, India.
The aqueous extract of safed musli significantly reverted the elevated levels of plasma glucose, triglycerides, cholesterol and serum corticosterone and also reduced the ulcer index, adrenal gland weight more as effectively as the standard drug (diazepam) in rats. Our result suggest that safed musli could be used for the treatment of oxidative stress-induced disorders.

Scientific World Journal. October 2013. Assessment of antioxidant and cytotoxicity activities of saponin and crude extracts of Chlorophytum borivilianum. The present paper focused on antioxidant and cytotoxicity assessment of crude and total saponin fraction of Chlorophytum borivilianum as an important medicinal plant. In this study, three different antioxidant activities (2,2-diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl radical scavenging (DPPH), ferrous ion chelating (FIC), and β -carotene bleaching (BCB) activity) of crude extract and total saponin fraction of C. borivilianum tubers were performed. Crude extract was found to possess higher free radical scavenging activity (ascorbic acid equivalents 2578 111 mg AA/100 g) and bleaching activity, while total saponin fraction displayed higher ferrous ion chelating. Cytotoxicity evaluation of crude extract and total saponin fraction against MCF-7, PC3, and HCT-116 cancer cell lines using 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5 diphenyltetrazolium bromide (MTT) cell viability assay indicated a higher cytotoxicity activity of the crude extract than the total saponin fraction on all cell lines, being most effective and selective on MCF-7 human breast cancer cell line.

Review article
J Ethnopharmacol. 2013 Nov 25. Safed musli (Chlorophytum borivilianum): a review of its botany, ethnopharmacology and phytochemistry.K Safed musli (Chlorophytum borivilianum) is an eminent medicinal plant of India and considered as a 'white gold' or 'divya aushad' in Indian systems of medicine. In Ayurveda, Chlorophytum borivilianum belongs to the group of "Vajikaran Rasayana" corroborated to its rejuvenating, aphrodisiac, natural sex tonic properties and effective in alleviating sexual disorders. It is largely used as ethnic medicine by local healers of indigenous communities of India.

Chlorophytum borivilianum: a white gold for biopharmaceuticals and neutraceuticals.
Curr Pharm Biotechnol. 2009; Thakur GS, Bag M, Sanodiya BS, Debnath M, Zacharia A, Bhadauriya P, Prasad GB, Bisen PS. Research and Development Centre, Bisen Biotech and Biopharma Pvt. Ltd., Biotech Research Park, M-7, Laxmipuram, Transport Nagar, Gwalior (M.P.), India.
Chlorophytum borivilianum Santapau & Fernandes (Liliaceae) also known as Safed Musli is a traditional rare Indian medicinal herb which has many therapeutic applications in Ayurvedic, Unani, Homeopathic and Allopathic system of medicine. Its roots (tubers) are widely used for various therapeutic applications. Safed Musli is used to cure physical illness and weakness, as an aphrodisiac agent and revitalizer, as general sex tonic, remedy for diabetes, arthritis and increasing body immunity, curative for natal and postnatal problems, for rheumatism and joint pains, increase lactation in feeding mothers, as antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, antitumor agent, also used in diarrhea, dysentery, gonorrhea, leucorrhea etc. It has spermatogenic property and is found useful in curing impotency, now it is considered as an alternative 'Viagra'. Its root contains steroidal and triterpenoidal saponins, sapogenins and fructans which act as therapeutic agents and play vital role in many therapeutic applications. It is a rich source of over 25 alkaloids, vitamins, proteins, carbohydrates, steroids, saponins, potassium, calcium, magnesium, phenol, resins, mucilage, and polysaccharides and also contains high quantity of simple sugars, mainly sucrose, glucose, fructose, galactose, mannose and xylose.

Safed Musli natural aphrodisiac questions
Q. Hello to doctor Sahelian and his wonderful product Passion Rx. Is it true that safed musli is a Viagra alternative?
   A. I have not had a chance to test this herb in clinical practice yet so I don't know, but based on historical usage and animal studies, safed musli looks promising as an aphrodisiac.

Q. Have you done any studies on safed musli, Drilizen and Solidilin? If so why they are not added to Passion Rx? They are being advertised as sex drive booster herbs by different information sources.
   A. I have not studied these in detail. There are dozens of effective aphrodisiac herbs and I cannot include all of them in one product.